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Taverns

Taverns -- essential to the earliest residents who had to travel -- were numerous in Butler County. State law required licensing, the cost depending on location. In 1805, an annual license cost $12 for taverns in the towns of Hamilton, Rossville and Middletown, and $6 for those operating elsewhere in the county. McClellan's Tavern is regarded as the first in Hamilton. William McClellan, recently of the army, opened the tavern in about 1796 in one of the buildings in abandoned Fort Hamilton. It was a store as well as a tavern, and when Butler County was formed in 1803, McClellan became the first elected sheriff, operating out of his tavern. (See entry for McClellan's Tavern.)


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